Man Says Bear Breaks Into Home, Traps Him Inside

A Colorado Springs man trapped himself in his bedroom and called authorities, after seeing a bear enter his home just before noon Monday.

The bear fled the home, located on the 1400 block of Cheyenne Boulevard on the southwest side of town, before authorities reached the scene. After looking over the property, Division of Wildlife workers have determined that screens with honeycomb left by the homeowner's trash can may have lured the bear to the owner's yard, and then inside his home.

Homeowner Griffin Smith tells 11 News that it was his cat who first alerted him to the bear's presence.

"So I woke up and went to the kitchen...I saw my cat on the counter completely puffed up..I looked over and saw a bear, a really big bear up to my stomach, in the kitchen by the dog food bowl."

Smith grabbed his dog and went immediately to his bedroom.

"It didn't follow didn't seem to notice me..I just yelled out of my room every once in awhile, called the house phone to try to scare it away...I just heard it shuffling around in the kitchen."

Smith called police, but by the time officers and Division of Wildlife workers arrived, the bear had disappeared.

This isn't the first time Smith has been visited by a bear: he tells 11 News that a bear and her cubs have climbed into his tree from time to time. But a bear venturing inside his home--that was a first for the 11-year homeowner.

Smith beekeeps in his backyard; leftover honeycombs set by the trash, combined with him leaving his door open for his dog, is what likely inspired the bear to venture to--and then enter--his home.

DOW reminds Springs residents that whether it be from feeding wildlife, or just simply living so close to animals that they have become used to humans, many animals--bears included--are becoming domesticated to the point that they have no qualms with intruding on humans' space. Both DOW and Smith say they hope Smith's experience reminds people to be more vigilant about living among wildlife.